TV shows that went bad when annoying "cute" little characters were introduced...

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Carlos Garcia, May 1, 2004.

  1. Carlos Garcia

    Carlos Garcia Screenwriter

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    Has anyone ever noticed how many TV shows got bad when they decided to introduce certain annoying "cute" little characters? This is a Hollywood syndrome that seems to go back a long time. Characters I can name, that fall into this syndrome are:

    I Love Lucy - Little Ricky: Cute looking kid, but he should've been seen and not heard. Poor kid obviously didn't take any acting lessons before he was hired.

    The Dick Van Dyke Show - Ritchie: If I hear another "MOMMY DADDY WATER" out of him, I think I'll shoot myself!

    The Brady Bunch - Cousin Oliver: The show went downhill as soon as the annoying Robbie Rist came onboard.

    The Partridge Family - Ricky: introduced as the cute singing kid next door, I would cringe when we had to hear him "sing".

    Married With Children - Seven: Ouch...Seven was hideous! Did this kid ever take an acting lesson? Thankfully his character was 86ed so fast that the show had time to recover, but the memories of his existence still aggravate us in reruns.

    Cartoons were a BIG culprit when it came to the cute little mascot syndrome, who can forget the king of annoyance:

    Scrappy Doo - Let me at im, let me at im!

    Batmite - Next time we want Batman to work alone, let's tell Batmite to join Robin.

    I can't even remember the name of that "cute" little alien in the Jetsons. Anyway, the episodes with him in it were surely not the best of the series.

    Well you get the idea. The list goes on and on. If anyone remembers more of these annoying characters, please feel free to add to the list.
     
  2. Andrew s wells

    Andrew s wells Second Unit

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    danny (I think that was his name) when he was introduced on different strokes.. not to mention them trying to keep arnold in the "little kid" role.
     
  3. Dave-P

    Dave-P Agent

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    "Alf." I hated when that "cute" puppet was added to the series. I guess the producers thought that the Tanner family alone wasn't enough to hold viewer's interest.
     
  4. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Huh? [​IMG] Ritchie was part of the show from the beginning, and if you think the Dick Van Dyke show got bad when they introduced him, then you should just admit that the Dick Van Dyke show isn't your cup of tea.

    Most of the time, shows don't go bad when they introduce a cute little kid. Most of the time, the show is slipping in the ratings and the kid is being introduced to try to save the show (which usually fails). The same goes for the introduction of other new characters (not just kids), long time lovers getting married, characters moving to a new city, etc. All of these changes are a symptom of a show going downhill, not the cause of it.
     
  5. Galen_V

    Galen_V Second Unit

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    [​IMG]
     
  6. AnthonyC

    AnthonyC Cinematographer

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    While it didn't go bad, Olivia on the Cosby Show was a downhill moment.
     
  7. ScottDombrowski

    ScottDombrowski Second Unit

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    I've always liked Ritchie a lot on The Dick Van Dyke Show. He's always seemed like a real kid to me.
     
  8. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Ahem ...

    Since I fail to see a DVD, LaserDisc, or VHS connection in this discussion, I think it's best it be located here in TV/HDTV Programming — where shows themselves are discussed.
     
  9. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Green alien genie on "Flinstones"
     
  10. Carlos Garcia

    Carlos Garcia Screenwriter

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    I suppose Ritchie is a bad example, since you're right, the show actually did start with Ritchie as part of the show. However, the character of Ritchie, DID come across as annoying many times. Yes the show IS my cup of tea since I own every season on DVD, and have watched each episode at least 300 times in my life. Still, Ritchie IS annoying to me, and I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that. To those who find him completely loveable, I sentence you to 20 continuous sittings of Ritchie's rendition of "The Little Drummer Boy!" [​IMG]
     
  11. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

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    Yes for specific examples, see the "New Kid in Town" section.
     
  12. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

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    Oh and Carlos, I find it a bit funny that you sentence people to multiple listens of little drummer Boy by Richy when only yesterday in the TV Software section, David VP said this about that episode in a thread.


    and you know what, I agree with him I love that episode and I don't find Little Drummer Boy to be all that bad.
     
  13. Carlos Garcia

    Carlos Garcia Screenwriter

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    Casey, I too find it odd that they would feel that way about the Christmas episode. I like that episode alot, but feel it could've done without Ritchie's contribution. Don't get me wrong, while I do find annoying moments with Ritchie on the show, the people on the Jumping the Shark board are definitely NOT constant watchers of the Dick Van Dyke Show, because if they were, they would clearly know that any of the "let's feel sorry for Sally because she can't get a date" episodes (aka: Sally cries on Mr. Henderson's shoulder's) would qualify as shark jumpers waaaaay before the Christmas episode. Now, as far as defending Larry Matthews, I think the problem is more with how his character was written, as opposed to his actual performance. How many times do we have to hear him yell off screen "MOMMY, DADDY, WATER!"? When they actually gave him certain things to do, I think he came off as very funny and contributing to the show's comedy. Remember the poker game with the marked cards? Or the Woodpecker episode? He was really funny in those. Also, I have seen the pilot for the Dick Van Dyke show, starring Carl Reiner in the Rob Petrie roll, and the kid who played Ritchie in that show takes the award for the most obnoxious kid in a golden age comedy. That alone is reason enough to like Larry's performance of Ritchie...at least to a certain degree.

    Carlos.
     
  14. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Are you sure it was "The Jetsons" here?
    Are you thinking of "Gazoo" on "The Flintstones" possibly??
    (Voiced by the very funny Harvey Korman.)
     
  15. Richard Kim

    Richard Kim Producer

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    Yup. His name was Orbity. He was a little white fuzzball who changed color based on his mood (I can't believe I actually still remember that! [​IMG] )
     
  16. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Oh, OK.
    Thanks, Richard.
    I don't recall him.
    Was he in the original version of "The Jetsons" (1962), which is the season coming out on DVD from WB on May 11th?
     
  17. Richard Kim

    Richard Kim Producer

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    Nope, Orbity was in the newer animated episodes that were made in the 1980's.
     
  18. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

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    I believe that he was not in the original series, but don't know for sure.
     
  19. Rob Gardiner

    Rob Gardiner Cinematographer

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    Mearth from MORK & MINDY. [​IMG]
     
  20. Zen Butler

    Zen Butler Producer

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    Mork- Happy Days
    Gazoo- the Flintstones
     

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